This former Primitive Methodist Church stands on the south side of Union Road, near Northam Bridge. The bridge's tollkeeper was one of the first trustees of the chapel.

In 1957, Northam Methodist Church celebrated its 80th Anniversary, which would give an opening date of 1877. However, in 1970, only 13 tears later, the church was celebrating its Centenary, apparently on the basis of negotiations having begun in 1870 for purchase of the site.

In fact, the first registration for worship was dated 16 March 1872, and the foundation stone was laid by the mayor of Southampton, Edwin Jones JP, on the 17 August 1874. The Southampton Observer, 22 August, reported that the building would be of “substantial character, in red brick with ornamental cement work, 41 feet long by 21 feet wide, the height being 20 feet from the floor line to the ceiling. There are six windows in it, and accommodation is provided for 250 worshippers.” It was designed and built by Alfred Southwell, a member and trustee. The opening services were planned for November 22, Nov 29 and Dec 6 1874, with a tea on November 23.
The Society had been established in 1866, meeting at first in the front room of a small house in Millbank Street, and then in a loft on the north side of Union Road, opposite the present building.
Two small cottages next door to the church were acquired and used for classrooms for the 250 strong Sunday School, and then, in 1928, demolished to make way for new premises, including a new hall that would become the chapel, and Mr Southwell’s “Old Chapel” was converted for Youth work. The church was registered for marriages 29 August 1911.

In 1932, the various branches of Methodism had joined to form the Methodist Church.

During a freak storm in July 1932, the front of the “Old Chapel” was badly damaged but survived until an air raid in July 1941 meant it had to be demolished. The Bosworth Hall was built 1951 and opened January 1952.

The church was refurbished in 1970 for the Centenary, and a new entrance hall, kitchen and vestry created and opened in May 1971.

By this time, the houses that had backed onto the chapel on Northam Road had been demolished, leaving an open space and car park, and allowing the Church to be seen from the main road as “the little church with the big welcome”

The building’s chequered history of building and rebuilding on the floodplain of the River Itchen meant that maintenance became an increasing problem for a shrinking congregation, and in 2019 the members made the painful decision to close. The final Carol Service with Harbour Lites Steel Band took place on the 15 December 2019. The last service of all was at 10.30am on 22 December 2019.

Northam Methodist Church

Image Unavailable

Exterior, c 2010

Northam Methodist Church

Image Unavailable

Interior of church, c 2010



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